I will admit that lately, in fits of vanity, I’ve taken too checking out my own reflection in windows as I’m walking past. Mostly I’m staking out my own baby bump, trying to see if it’s grown any since I last checked my reflection, five minutes before.
During these drive-by bumpings I’ve caught sight of something truly wonderful, me with my semi-noticeable baby bump and my daughter walking beside me. Me, part of the perfect duo of pregnant mom and toddler that I pined after for so long.
I can’t tell you how many times I glimpsed a pregnant mother and her small child while I was trying and wished so fervently that it were me. After our diagnoses I was very much in a place of letting go of that dream. I assumed I would never be pregnant again and I folded that image of my pregnant belly walking alongside my dancing daughter into an origami swan and set it free upon a slow-moving stream. I was sad to watch it float away, but I understood the letting go had to be done.
And yet now I see it–that perfect image I had so carefully folded into something else so that I could set it free–looking back at me. I glimpse it in the quick reflections of Isa and I as we walk past cars on the way to the park. I notice it as we stand in her classroom, waving goodbye to her maestras. I stare straight through it as we brush our teeth before bedtime.
That perfect image of that perfect family that I lusted after for so long, that incredible pairing of potential and perfection, of a child and her sibling-to-be, that is me now. I am a part of that thing that I wanted for so long. And I can’t help asking myself, over and over again, how is this my life? How did I get to be so incredibly lucky?
Lately Isa has been asking more about the “baby in my tummy.” She’ll bring her future sibling up unprompted, reminding me that there is a sister or brother inside me and he or she will grow and grow and then magically become a part of our family. I cherish these conversations almost as much as I cherish the daily flutters of this new baby inside of me. Each moment of this pregnancy is an invaluable gift that I string upon the impossibly beautiful necklace of my life. Sometimes I worry the necklace will break and all these precious moments will spill upon the floor, lost forever. But then I remember than this necklace can’t break. It might end up being shorter than I expected, but each perfect pearl will remain, these incredible moments can never be taken away from me.
I am just so grateful for what I have right now. I wanted this for so long and then I was told I’d most likely never have it. That combination has made living this dream one of the greatest gifts of my life. This pregnancy is a treasure I will always cherish.